Professional wrestling fans know Kevin Steen as this big, bearded, burly Grizzly bear, but what they don’t know is when he’s with his wife and kids, he turns into a big, lovable Teddy bear.
A good husband and a good father, the talented Steen is one of WWE’s newest signings, joining the NXT family.
Don’t let his soft side fool ya. Once he steps near a ring, you don’t want to mess with this bruiser.
It’s all business, what’s best for business, i.e. best for fans.
And fans love it.
Quite the buzz through social media when Steen, one of the top talents on the indie scene, inked a deal with the sports entertainment leader, and no one was happier than Steen.
Then, everything happened so fast.
A native of Quebec, Steen along with his wife, two kids, pets and parents made the three-day road trip from north of the border to Orlando. With so much stuff, they needed patience and two vehicles (his parents driving the U-Haul) to transport family and belongings.
An in-ring wrestling journey that began in 1999 is currently on stand-by at the state-of-the-art WWE Performance Center, where he is learning the WWE way from a Dream Team of coaches/trainers.
Steen, 30, recalls learning the ropes from Serge Jodoin in a barn in Quebec in 1999. He later extended that experience with tutelage by trainers at a wrestling school in Montreal wearing Jacques Rougeau‘s name. Rougeau, one of Canada’s best, had much success in tag team and singles wrestling in WWF, which is WWE.
Steen began wrestling in flea markets and then for Rougeau’s promotion, before starring with Combat Zone Wrestling, Pro Wrestling Guerrilla and Ring of Honor, the later where he teamed with current NXT superstar Sami Zayn to win Ring of Honor tag team gold. Steen won other tag team and singles titles, including the Ring of Honor World title.
Still working hard, he’s an accomplished wrestler, who paid his dues locally, nationally and worldwide, wrestling in barns, basements, flea markets and nice arenas.
Through the ups and downs, it helps when you have a solid support system.
Steen’s parents always backed him, allowing him to train for pro wrestling at age 16. He became interested in it when he watched WrestleMania XI with his father who rented it from the video store. Passionate about the business, he even named his son after his favorite wrestler who starred in WWF (WWE).
WWE is Steen’s dream, and he is one step closer to making it reality, but first he would like to create some memorable moments in NXT.
TMZ isn’t the only one talking to celebrities at airports. Steen received some career savvy advice from Stone Cold Steve Austin at a terminal.
To come from a barn and find yourself one day discussing wrestling with Stone Cold and then stepping into the WWE Performance Center, it’s a major step up, no doubt.
Now the 5-11, 240-pound wrestler is ready for the NXT step which hopefully leads to a match one day with WWE superstar John Cena -- something that would make him and his son, Owen, extremely happy.
NXT features The Ascension (Konnor and Viktor), Sasha Banks, Bayley, Alexa Bliss, Tyler Breeze, Charlotte, Baron Corbin, Corey Graves, Adrian Neville, Mojo Rawley and Sami Zayn to name a few along with newer signees Finn Balor (Fergal Devitt), Hideo Itami (Kenta Kobayashi) and Steen.
With the emergence of WWE divas and superstars like Bray Wyatt & the Wyatt Family (Luke Harper and Erick Rowan), Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, Bo Dallas, Adam Rose, Xavier Woods, Rusev, Lana, Emma, Summer Rae and Paige, the company is proving that the developmental program at the WWE Performance Center, branded NXT, is working.
NXT at Full Sail
Rollins, an NXT alum, returns where his WWE journey began when he appears at the next NXT television tapings on Oct. 23 at Full Sail Live at Full Sail University in Winter Park, near Orlando. Meet-n-Greet is at 4 p.m. Bell time is 6:30 p.m.
NXT in Fort Pierce
WWE NXT returns to the Havert L. Fenn Center, 2000 Virginia Ave., Fort Pierce on Nov. 15 for a fun-filled, action-packed house show.
See more of the next generation of WWE superstars and divas in Fort Pierce, along with a pre-show Meet-n-Greet included in the price of admission -- $20 ringside, $10 general admission.
WWE’s NXT http://www.wwe.com/shows/wwenxt
Twitter: Jim Varsallone @jimmyv3
YouTube: jim varsallone (jimmyv3 channel)
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